Cytoprotective effects of ginsenoside Rd on apoptosis-associated cell death in the isolated human pancreatic islets
Keywords:Apoptosis, Ginsenoside Rd, Culture, Human pancreatic islets, Insulin, Transplantation
Ginsenoside Rd (GS-Rd), one of the main pharmacologically active components of ginseng, has shown the potential to stabilize mitochondrial membrane integrity and decrease apoptotic death in neuronal and non-neuronal cells. The present study aimed to evaluate the effect of this bioactive molecule on the apoptosis-associated cell death in human pancreatic islets. In this regard human pancreatic islets were isolated and grouped for the treatment with GS-Rd. The isolated islets were treated with different concentrations of GS-Rd. After 24 and 72 h of incubation, the islets were evaluated in terms of viability, BAX, BCL2, and insulin gene expression, BAX, BCL2, and caspase-3 protein expression, apoptosis, and glucose-induced insulin/C-peptide secretion. Our results revealed the islet survival was significantly decreased in the control group after 72 h of incubation. However, GS-Rd inhibited the progress of the islet death in the treated groups. TUNEL staining revealed that the preventive effect of this molecule was caused by the inhibition of apoptosis-associated death. In this regard, the activation of caspase-3 was down-regulated in the presence of GS-Rd. GS-Rd did not exhibit undesirable effects on glucose-induced insulin and C-peptide stimulation secretion. In conclusion, GS-Rd inhibited the progress of death of cultured human pancreatic islets by diminishing the apoptosis of the islet cells.
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